advertisement

The Bipolar Brain – A Radio Station You Can’t Turn Off

November 23, 2012 Natasha Tracy

Earworms are songs you can't get out of your head and they seem to affect my bipolar brain in a big way. More at Breaking Bipolar blog.

Ah, the human brain. It’s a wondrous thing. It calculates, it categorizes, it makes connections and it remembers the square root of 144. I’m constantly awed by its power.

But one of the annoying things that can happen to a brain is that somehow, a song gets stuck in it. Somehow, even though its great power and ability, the catchy hook of the latest pop song gets stuck inside some errant neurons and plays over and over.

And this causes a lot more trouble in my bipolar brain than it does for others.

I Have Justin Bieber Stuck in My Head; I’m Thinking of Cutting it Off

I find myself with songs stuck in my head all the time. Like, every day, all the time. And they aren’t songs that I like or even songs I have heard that day they are just random songs that somehow fight their way into my consciousness long enough to create a groove there. And once they’re there? Good luck getting them out.

My Bipolar Brain and Earworms

According to Wikipedia, this phenomenon is known as an “earworm,” “musical imagery repetition” or “involuntary music imagery.” In Germany, they have a special word for it – Ohrwurn – “a type of song that typically has a high, upbeat melody and repetitive lyrics that verge between catchy and annoying.”

Earworms are completely natural, of course, and apparently, 98% of people experience them. Women seem to experience earworms for longer and are more irritated by them. Songs with lyrics account for about three-quarters of earworms.

My Earworm Moved In

Unlike the experience that most people have, I have earworms much of the time. Sometimes it’s one song that repeats for days and sometimes it’s many songs in a day, but predominantly they are there.

I have found no research suggesting people with bipolar disorder have more incidence of earworms than others but there is research that says people with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) do and as I’ve remarked previously, OCD and bipolar disorder may be linked. And earworms on hypomania? That is your brain on extra-crispy-crazy.

Admittedly, it is a very obsessive thing my brain does. It feels like an obsession with the invisible. I can never see it so it never goes away. And I find this highly troubling.

Like, highly troubling. Like I could see someone wanting to ice pick his or herself just to make the blooming song in his or her head shut the heck up. It’s that much of an anxious obsession. It’s crazy-driving obsession. Sometimes I feel like I’m begging my brain to think of anything else but it laughs and carries on with the 30-second loop.

Holy macaroni is it ever frustrating.

So, my question to you is this: How often do you experience earworm? Is it troubling to you?

You can find Natasha Tracy on Facebook or GooglePlus or @Natasha_Tracy on Twitter.

APA Reference
Tracy, N. (2012, November 23). The Bipolar Brain – A Radio Station You Can’t Turn Off, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, September 18 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/breakingbipolar/2012/11/bipolar-brain-radio-cant-turn-off



Author: Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is a renowned speaker, award-winning advocate and author of Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar.

Find Natasha Tracy on her blog, Bipolar BurbleTwitter, Instagram and Facebook.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

T
says:
September, 9 2017 at 5:07 pm
I wish I did, I understand your pain! Especially being woken up in the middle of the night, sometimes it's only a single line on a song but I can't stop from saying it over and over. Just want to turn it off
Todd
says:
August, 7 2017 at 1:35 pm
Beethoven was deaf and think of the music in his head. Count it as a blessing.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Alan Leak
says:
August, 26 2017 at 9:58 pm
No offence but if you think this is a blessing then, believe me, you have no concept of the torture this condition can inflict. There are no words to decribe this mental agony...

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Christian
says:
September, 26 2017 at 3:39 am
You should check brokenrecordsyndrome.blogspot.com.
Daphne
says:
August, 6 2017 at 8:26 am
This is pretty much a continuous thing. Even in my dreams I have songs going and wake up with them stuck in my head for hours. Sometimes I don't even have to hear a song for it to get lodged in my brain. Sometimes just a word or two in normal conversation can pop a song and next thing you know, I'm moving about singing the lyrics. I keep telling my family that it's not a normal thing and there should be a name for this.
Jan
says:
August, 4 2017 at 9:21 am
The constant tune in my head began 2 years ago when I found porn on my husband's devices. Hasn't let up and has been much worse lately. It's exhausting. It starts the second I wake up, even in the middle of the night. I don't have a history of bipolar, but I take Prozac and admit to a moderate amount of OCD and anxiety. I weaned myself off Xanax and Vyvanse earlier this year. I'm 63.
Margaret Di Pasquale Fox
says:
August, 4 2017 at 4:52 am
Oh me too,over and over,driving me potty I don't want to say anything I just can't stop the music in my head music in my head and it's like different tunes and all the time repeat over and over and if I myself kind of breathing the tune out breathing it like in the music and if I'm wrong thinking about something I want to stop doing this and I'm doing it while I'm trying to think about stopping it I think it's sending me crazy
Makayla buck
says:
July, 31 2017 at 4:09 pm
I have it all the time! My songs that play in my head are full songs and it will just repeat and i end up getting like 8-13 songs played in my head a day ive counted, like today at the dinner table i sat down and all of a sudden "beauty school dropout" started playing in my head and i havent seen grease in 2 and a half years! When it happens i have trouble hearing people like i cant concentrate on 1 person or if there is noise coming from something around me and i have that stuff playing in my head while someone is talking to me i only get parts of what they say.? and i get frustrated and end up breaking down and crying cause no one knows whats happening in my head and they judge me for it. Im going into 10th grade and i struggle in class because of it.??
Melissa
says:
July, 28 2017 at 12:33 pm
The dang song won't shut off!! Over and over and over.. ridiculous
trevor
says:
July, 21 2017 at 2:51 pm
I have ASD and lately I've had "There will be applause" stuck in my head. To counter it I play Daft Punk's Around The World on repeat. It's more repetitive but non-annoying to me.
Lino
says:
July, 17 2017 at 6:07 am
I've had two songs that seem as if they constantly play in my head. Perhaps they are not constant and only play when I think about them. Maybe they are constant and I have somehow managed to push them to the background. They are "Evacuate the Dancefloor" by Cascada [I absolutely hate this song] and "Toes" by LIGHTS [which I love]. When I have a moment of silence around me, I start humming either of these songs. I do get other songs stuck in my head from time to time. I even dream about them. But they eventually disappear. These two however, never seem to go away.
Robert
says:
July, 16 2017 at 7:34 am
Good Lord yes! It's been something I've lived with since I was 14 (46 now). It only got worse during and after military service. It can get so bad that I even get a DJ in it. It's usually unintelligible compared to the songs but its there. Sometimes the DJ is breaks back to military radio comms. Then the "music" starts up again. It can get so bad that it triggers other things in PTSD and bi-polar. Sometimes I can counter it by a quick meditation but it can interrupt that. But if I go over Korean vocabulary said aloud over and over that tends to force it out. (Korean terms used in martial arts). I second the person that said classical/instrumental music can help.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Alan Leak
says:
August, 4 2017 at 11:47 pm
one thing that has been helping me a lot with this problem is listening to meditation type music/lucid dream music and the like..
Sterling
says:
July, 14 2017 at 9:17 pm
I have that problem. Incessant loud music, all types. I have bipolar and ocd. I m on antiosychotics. They don t really help the music bit. Music and TV detox does work. No more charts or electronic music and NO commercials with jingles likely to stay in my head for days. This earworm phenomenon is massive. I ve been checking online for years now and there are more and more entries dealong with this. With the bipolar i have issues of self harm and wanting to commit suicidd but I can say honestly this ear worm problem is the worst of all the aspects of my condition and if there is one thing that will push me to harm myself it s incessant music that won t stop. I hit my head against the wall or furniture on and on but it s doesn t go
Summer Rain
says:
July, 9 2017 at 5:18 am
If you want to stop it then do a music cleanse. You have to listen to music for 2 - 4 weeks with no lyrics. Mostly classical music and then it will stop. Probably way before then. I've had the same problem and it got so bad I was waking up in the middle of the night with songs in my head as well. I also stopped watching TV and I read. I did this as a 30 day cleanse. I strongly suggest this. Music and TV heighten negative thoughts and puts all kinds of negative, submissive @ repetitive thoughts in ones head. All the luck to you guys. BLESS

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Alan Leak
says:
July, 11 2017 at 2:04 am
Hi whilst this will probably help some to a certain degree it is just one of dozens (if not hundreds) of 'strategies'
that people develop to try and alleviate the symptoms of this horrendous condition.
Personally I have suffered with this for over 50 years, so there is little I have not tried during that time:
pyschiatrists, pyschologists, hypnotherapy, medication, spiritual healing, and anything else you can think of
(including most, if not all, of the suggestions within this section).
I have no real idea why this happens to people; I can only surmise that it is some form of OCD/bipolar disorder
(very little else seems to fit the bill).
One thing, however, is certain: despite all the amazing advances in the medical sciences over the last 50 years or more,
there is still no real 'cure' for this problem. Hopefully, at some future point, we may know enough to help those who suffer;
in the meantime I guess we have to try and cope as best we can.
I wish I could be more positive about this but it's very difficult - especially after 50 years!
Anyway I truly hope that everyone here will eventually enjoy the peace of mind that is so often taken for granted by the
millions of 'normal' people out there.
Gordleg
says:
June, 27 2017 at 4:45 pm
I'm in my 52nd year and, until recently, I thought everybody had this. I can tune out the 'record' quite a bit, or even sometimes make my own - I used to be a musician and, actually, I'd rather keep this 'malady' than be cured of it. I am most sorry that others find it distressing.
Kendra
says:
June, 22 2017 at 10:10 am
This is torturing me. Bloody Barry White for 4 days straight now. I feel like I notice it more as I get older. I wonder if I'm going insane, feeling like I'm trapped in my own brain.
Jay
says:
June, 22 2017 at 12:45 am
I experience it every night. Its like a radio in my head. I can change the song but i cant turn it down or off. It causes me to have trouble sleeping at nighr because of it and im looking for answers. Please someone help.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Victoria lawyer
says:
June, 28 2017 at 1:58 am
This is the same thing that happens to me but I don't even hear the song although it still plays in my but if I try to stop it just even the thought will add another song.as I type I have 2 songs playing in my head.I've heard them before but not during the or even this week and its not like its the while song it just one part.I'm only 13 and this has been happening to since I can remember its troubled my sleeping hours and my consintration.it really starts to mess me up when its guite.like when I was taking test I would have 2 or 3 songs in the background.I don't know what's wrong with me but I've tried to stop it by listening to the end or the song but it feels like I have 2 control sticks over my mind.and like one of them is jammed.and its always jammed until I even think of something that can relate to this it just gets stuck like a broken record.pin really getting tired of this to the point when I'm alone and this happens I scream in my own mind.but it won't shut up.ever.I don't know how to stop it.but if anyone could say that it wasn't a big deal then clearly its never happen to them.although it may just be justin bieber to Beyonce it still their.and won't stop.I feel as if its gotten so bad for me my mind has just started to reating a number of words in the same order that I heard that same day.I swear I need help this has just got out of hand.
Veronica
says:
June, 3 2017 at 11:34 pm
With me it is always the last song I heard, but the way I am different is that I substitute lyrics about hatred or my ass or something obscene or vulgar. I sing constantly about hating Jesus because of my suffering and the suffering of others in the world. I cannot turn it off. It is worse when I am alone, because then I actually sing this crap out loud for hours (or however long I am alone). I don't know what is wrong with me, but clearly I need help.
Otto Schmorgle
says:
May, 30 2017 at 5:49 pm
I have the same problem but its always the last song I hear. I am careful to turn off certain commercials I hear or the stupid music will loop. It does turn off if I substitute something like watching something on Youtube.
Mailliw
says:
May, 25 2017 at 4:07 am
I've been trying brown noise to counter this but sometimes my mind will overcome it and I have to turn the volume up, the music usually lasts for a while, especially when I take a shower or do something menial. Thanks for writing this, I'm thinking of getting help for my (undiagnosed) borderline personality disorder and this just gives me another reason to stop delaying.
C
says:
May, 17 2017 at 11:27 pm
Thank you so much. Wow
Greg Hansen
says:
May, 10 2017 at 7:35 am
I constantly have music playing in my head and not always the same song. It can switch from song to song in seconds. It is entirely frustrating. I have found that if I play the song slowly it may go away.
Christine D
says:
May, 5 2017 at 7:54 am
I have bipolar type 2 and I just Googled the terms song stuck in your head and the second thing that came up was your article. Before I had medication the loop of song was in the foreground of my mind every second but always competed with every thought that I had. It was the first thing in my mind when I would start to wake up in the morning. Even in the middle of the night when I was sleeping and I would wake slightly in order to turn over in bed the song would be blasting away. Now that I take medication ( lamotrigine and escitalopram) the songs have seemed to become quieter and more in the background of my mind but when I listen to music I always notice that the next day they are still pretty intrusive. I think I will talk to my psychiatrist about this and see if increasing the dose of Lamotrigine might help. Thank you so much for this article. It's good to know that I'm not alone!
Linda
says:
April, 18 2017 at 6:20 pm
I've had the same exact song, (I don't even like) play over & over for MONTHS & about at my wits end - I am literally being driven crazy! Anyone know how to stop this? Suffering!

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Kerri
says:
April, 19 2017 at 12:42 pm
Linda, I have the same problem happening. No matter what's going on around me, the same lyrics are replaying over and over and over again. I have headaches from it when it happens. It can go for days. It's driving me crazy as well. I don't know what to do about it either.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Faith Kline
says:
May, 4 2017 at 1:16 pm
I have this, and I love it because I am a dancer and always have music to move to. Always. If you want to stop what I call "feedback loop" you simply put the song on repeat until the song leaves your head. Longest run was 15 hours , but then it goes away. I enjoy this gift, but people who hear and sing non stop do not. Oh well!!
Deepak sharma
says:
March, 22 2017 at 8:07 am
So I'm facing this problem for last 5 year .
As a profession I'm a dj n producer .
From morning to evening I'm in to music totally .
In day I work for a online music company n in night I play in different clubs .
N coz of this problem I can not sleep can't think , whenever I close my eyes its play any song from anywhere .
I know thousands of songs that's the problem
In morning my mind play easy listening
Day rock night edm n when I'm trying to sleep all mix up .
I'm fucking so irritated n planning to quit my all work n start something new away from music .
Any good adavice plz
Djdeepakwtf@gmail.com
What People Call Me By
says:
March, 21 2017 at 3:02 am
I put my brain on lockdown when a stupid song tries to penetrate the recesses of my mind and take hold. This involves one of two things:

1. Classical music. My go-to song is, and always will be, Bethoven's 7th Symphony, Second Movement (Alegretto) and, as long as I'm not feeling down, Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata (though I prefer to avoid the latter if I'm in a sad mood as it can be detrimental to my state of mind).

I should add however that I never indulge in trash (92% of modern) music intentionally. It's usually due to a co-worker, or a movie I'm watching (though I've been avoiding these more often as well since they're going in the same direction as the music), or while in a public area where they're playing this garbage that I pick up some brain draining song. It's no wonder there's tons of American's today who don't even know what WWII was, don't know the capital of their own country, can't name more than two presidents, have no idea when Columbus sailed the ocean blue, or when the Declaration of Independence was penned, and are becoming generally stupider by the second... though in retrospect the ignorant do make much better consumers. So from a capitalist standpoint they're building a treasure trove of blabbering brain-dead simpletons. I'm not angry saying this. I'm almost brought to tears by the stark truth of it.
Sorry, I'm drifting into the dark recesses of my mind and trying to drag you along for the ride.

2. Read up on the latest breakthroughs in science. Primarily quantum physics or quantum mechanics, though I do like learning about new discoveries and revelations in the clinical and astronomical realms as well. Essentially, delving though-provoking things that interest you, but that may also perhaps challenge you to expand your mind a bit.

I don't believe this should be limited to scientific however, but I believe it could work for other interests that offer a bit of challenge. Perhaps you like to knit and want to challenge yourself with a new pattern that is complex to master. Or perhaps you enjoy puzzles and should try a more difficult level. Forcing your mind to focus on something of interest that actually challenges the mind has a tendency, for myself at least, to take out the trash.
Romandj
says:
February, 25 2017 at 5:04 pm
I don't remember when it started. I do know for some odd reason I am a whiz at name that tune. Two notes into a song and I can name it. For the last several years I have songs play on my head and it is whatever I heard last. Plays and plays and never ends just jumps to the next song or even commercial jingle or just a rhythm . It never stops. I have a very slight ringing in my ear which I can only hear when I lay down to sleep . If I concentrate on that ringing the music will finally stop long enough for me to falll asleep. I don't think I am bipolar but have suffered with anxiety and depression for several years also. Seems logical that there is a connection. I am so thankful to read alll your stories so I know it's not just me.
Graham
says:
February, 17 2017 at 3:41 am
Empathy to all of you who are troubled by this tiresome phenomenon. I have suffered from anxiety and lots of mental / emotional issues throughout my adult life. Following a major breakdown four years ago I was diagnosed with PTSD. I think it was a well-reasoned diagnosis, but my own subsequent investigations led me to understand that I had in fact been afflicted by toxic metal poisoning, which induces / mimics all kinds of mental and physical illnesses.

Anyway. I have had music loops in my head all my adult life. Among other styles of music I like sixties rock, but that doesn't mean I necessarily want 'Heroes & Villains' by the Beach Boys playing constantly in my head for five years, as it did in my twenties. My current constantly-looping songs are Lady Friend by the Byrds and And Your Bird Can Sing by the Beatles. Can't really switch 'em off. They might go quiet if I'm distracted, but if I'm on my own, especially in transit, they swell up reliable as clockwork.

The only 'cure' for this problem I have found is meditation. In my particular case, the technique of 'insight meditation' or 'Vipassana' as it's called. It is very powerful, sorting out the clutter and creating wide-open spaces in your head so your mind can relax and breathe. It's very deep mind/body work and can potentially be 'too much' for people who haven't previously attempted some form of formalised self-examination (e.g. cathartic therapy), but it can also be tremendously liberating, from many 'demons', but also from endlessly playing songs. I haven't practiced for a while, but I'm about to get back to it.

Please look it up, it may be of use to you.
Gene
says:
February, 15 2017 at 9:57 am
It's heartening to know that I'm not alone in this constant playing of music in my head--classical, fiddle tunes, songs, whatever. They only go away when I'm thinking verbally. It's like the right side of the brain is completely independent of the left--and they do function somewhat that way normally. I do meditation, and that kind of focusing on the breath makes both the music and the other thoughts go away, but it's only temporary. In fact, since I've been doing more and more mediation, the earworms are more constant, I think because the aimless, meandering thoughts are less. The best I can do is when I'm aware of the earworm, I try to shift my attention to the hear and now of my breathing and what I'm doing--without thinking about it.
Maya
says:
February, 14 2017 at 6:13 pm
For as long as I can remember I've always had music playing constantly in my head. It's always been more like background music. If I need to concentrate I have no problem shutting it off but otherwise when I choose to "tune in" it's like a constant radio station! I can even "change stations" by skipping from one song to another. I've always wondered about this. It doesn't really bother me, I just think it's weird. I guess I can say I've always got my own entertainment.
Leslie
says:
January, 23 2017 at 7:23 am
I have always had a song stuck in my head ever since I can remember, but I never really realized it until I got older. I mean I knew I always had a song stuck in my head, but I never really paid attention to it, it was just there. Now as a 29 year old woman it drives me crazy sometimes. I never goes away. It can be any song, rap, pop, country, old, new, etc. I don't even have to listen to music everyday to have a song stuck in my head. Songs just randomly come to me, when I'm in the shower, when I am cooking, when I am working, even if I am sad or angry I can't help it. I can be crying my eyes out and the song is still there playing in the back of my head. I can be thinking about something and the damn song is still there playing over and over. Even if it is a song from a commercial. I find myself singing and humming a lot when I am at home. I even come up with my own beats and songs in my head. I can't ever concentrate to go to sleep, therefore I suffer from chronic insomnia. I have even woken up to songs and music that I was dreaming about. I am no singer or musician, but I believe that if I ever took up any singing classes I would be good at it. I feel I have a pretty descent voice. I might even be great at playing instruments. Music was always something I loved, I just never pursued it. Living in poverty my whole life, I just never had the chance or opportunity, but I am still young. I don't want to be like a famous singer or anything, but I think if I just try something different maybe I will cured. Maybe I am not crazy after all, like I feel sometimes. By the way the song playing in my head right now is Lady Gaga You and I. Don't know where it came from since I haven't heard that song in a while and I am not such a huge fan of Lady Gaga. I have had it in my head I would say for about 3-4 days and I keep waking and going to sleep to it, well barely sleeping. Hopefully the song will go away soon I am tired of it and on the next song. I feel like it takes over my life sometimes. I just cant rid of it for good.
LJ
says:
January, 19 2017 at 2:45 pm
My latest earworm is All Over You by Live. I really like that song, but I wish it would stop!
Jake
says:
January, 15 2017 at 10:15 pm
Been tormented by this my whole life. My current perpetually playing song is called two weeks by a band called all that remains.

I've never been properly diagnosed with whatever is wrong with me other than anxiety and depression because last time I've seen a mental health professional was when I was a child. I know I also am fairly sure I'm either psychic or schitzofrenic or something but I need to get it under control, I start a new job tomorrow which is also probably keeping me awake although the darn song playing is no help. Somehow it just changed to a song by breaking Benjamin called diary of Jane. I hate this song so much. I can't hold jobs easily and can't even find my way there without using GPS on my phone to and from work for about a month straight until I get the navigational part of driving to work beat into my brain. It's hard to hide my problems from employers that's why I have no health insurance. Tomorrow I start a new job and I hope the insurance starts soon

Also my name is Stan but my family messed me up from the day I was born by calling me Jake after my uncle Jake whose name was also Stan, I have no family anymore I dunno what's wrong with me please help if any of this applies to you and you actually HAVE been properly diagnosed
Jack
says:
January, 13 2017 at 3:51 am
There is no such thing as bipolar. These symptoms are caused by trauma and a society out of alignment with natural law due to statism, or the mixed economy -- namely cronyism and state for profit welfare.
Matthew
says:
January, 7 2017 at 8:35 pm
Hello fellow sufferers,

My name is Matthew and I've had this same problem for 6 months or more now. I don't even know when it first started. The current song is a fragment of "Trouble" by Wade Bowen. "I wish trouble always looked that good... I wish trouuuuuughble always looked that GOOD...repetitive instrumental" I heard this song a few days ago and it became my new permanent this early morning. It feels so bad. I try to take control of my mind, even calling upon God but I have no victory. God is not helping me with this problem. I do not know if you all are believers or not in Jesus Christ but I am and even though God is not helping me with this specific problem I will still believe. As I am typing this my symptom is being alleviated which I thank God for. I hope we all find a cure to this awful affliction.
Adrienne
says:
December, 28 2016 at 10:47 pm
I've had non-stop music playing in my head for years and years. Like, at least 35 years. It gets louder and more fast tempo when I'm over tired and stressed out. It keeps me from sleeping. If I wake up, it's right there. Occasionally it does that when I'm trying to concentrate on work. I have been medicated and not medicated for depression, anxiety, bipolar and ADHD. I'm currently off meds. Music was always there on meds and still there off meds. No change at all.
I doubt I'd want to make it go away completely, but I'm curious to know what it would be like if my head were just...quiet... Ahhhh
Happierthanlasryear
says:
December, 26 2016 at 3:18 am
I've had music playing for 50 years. I am bipolar, ADHD , OCD, ptsd and on Meds. Still the music plays, more often when I'm stressed. So..I took up music and now can manipulate the type, rythym, and sound. It may not work for everyone, but music is a powerful mathematic arrangement, and you might look into deciphering music for yourselves. Some of you sound so trapped and frustrated. What's to lose? You may have a gift and it's never too late. I began to play early in life and gave it up for sports. Now music learning, albeit a bit of work, is opening up a part of my mind, eventually I'll write this music down and own it, rather than it bothering me.
Stuart
says:
December, 23 2016 at 10:01 am
Hi, I'm 63 and suffered depression for 25 years plus. The music that plays in my right ear is instrumental, brass band type music, ranging from the Welsh national anthem to pop music. It is quite depressing to be standing in a store looking at something whilst this is happening.

I am moderately deaf in both ears and I am starting to feel very isolated and vulnerable for some reason. I do not mix very well but my psychiatrist thinks that I am getting better; but I must not give up hope, as that is all that is left in the box. Happy Christmas to everyone wherever you are.
Grace
says:
December, 17 2016 at 6:25 pm
I don't even know how to ask Google this question. I don't think I'm bipolar or have OCD, but for about a year now I have been singing The Star Spangled Banner all day everyday. It just pops into my head, and sometimes I start singing it out loud without noticing. I never even hear that song. Why is it in my head? Why do I always sing it?!
badcrouton
says:
December, 10 2016 at 9:13 pm
I'm 40 and have had instrumental earworms just about every day since I was a child. I always thought of it as a score to my life. For years, I found it comforting. But in the last few years, I've been increasingly bothered by shorter and shorter earworms. Instead of loops of 20-30 seconds, I'll get a mere bar of 4-5 seconds of some instrumental theme. At the moment, I've got the title score to the show The Crown in a loop. Hans Zimmer stuff easily embeds in my brain. (Dark Knight, Inception, dozens more)

So I've been on dozens of different anti-depressants for persistent clinical depression for half my life. I've tried just about everything. For a few months, I took pramipexole (brand name Mirapex), usually prescribed for restless leg syndrome but also off-label for depression. I found it dulled my mood too much to the point that I came off of it. But now I realize that it significantly reduced my earworms, as now they're back with a vengeance.

Anyway, I needed somewhere to share this. Thanks to Natasha's 4-year-old post for providing a place to do so...
Rad5
says:
December, 9 2016 at 3:28 am
Wow it's so good to read that others share my musical dilemma. Have had this a few years and have been searching for answers. I still have a tune in my head from 4 days ago. Sometimes lasts longer. Sometimes can n replaced with another song. Very annoying.
Mike
says:
December, 7 2016 at 11:31 pm
Help; I am now 62; retired in the USA. Things were going well...long term, more or less happy union. After years of evading this "repetitive song loop" problem [Note: when I was a kid a horrific song replay , over & over was The Supremes" song " Getting back Into My Heart Again."

I HATE THIS SONG. HOWEVER IT WAS ONE OF THE MOST PERVASIVE TUNES ON A NONSTOP LOOP BRAIN REPLAY. I NEVER BOUGHT THIS UP WITH A FORMER, INTELLIGENT PSYCHIATRIST. WHY, I DUNNO: the problem disappeared for many years. But has begun to return.

I have: ADD, anxiety disorder,I may be one of 3 bipolar patients. (IPad editing sucks, by the way, Apple, you idiots).

What does this all mean? HELP. THANKS.
Alan Leak
says:
December, 1 2016 at 10:54 pm
Hi Micag you've just saved me the trouble of writing a short essay because your words have almost perfectly described my own problems with this extremely unusual condition.
This started when I was about 20 and I'm now 67! I am resigned to living with this for the rest of my life; I have tried everything to 'cure' this problem over the years - even spiritual healing, and no, I'm afraid it didn't help at all!
Some days are better than others but it never really goes away. I used to think I was the only person in the world with this but now realise it's far more common than I could ever have imagined.
Got to keep going - that's all you can do :-)
Micag
says:
November, 22 2016 at 10:31 am
I remember when the music started playing in my head. It was during an intense episode of depression which began as a result of a paranoid delusion. I had never had mental health problems until I turned 33yrs old. I began thinking that my upstairs neighbors were peeping into my windows. My roommate had to kick me out to go live with my parents. It didn't occur to me that I was hallucinating until it happened again at my parents house. That's when I began a 3 + yr episode of depression. The first time I noticed the music was during this time. It was the opening song to futurama. The music loops haven't stopped since. When I have a TV on or radio, or in a conversation, I don't hear it usually. It's actually tiring for me. On a bad day, the music is louder, and it's almost as if I'm being forced to make the music. Like I'm creating it, and it saps energy from me. I've heard of OCD sufferers say they have to complete their "tick" no matter what. This is the same. Trying to stop the song is like trying to stop a car. I have some impact at first, but the song pushes me over quite easily. I hear the music playing in my deams too. I'll roll over, and realize that the song I'm hearing was playing before I woke up to roll over. On very rare occasions I'll realize that no song is playing, and as I do, my brain picks a song to play. What this means is that I NEVER get a quite time. I can't concentrate on a conversation if the music plays during, and harder to read. If I end up say working and too busy or unable to turn on music, I spend that time tortured by the music loop in my head. I get tense, and headaches, and overwhelmed until I can turn on a radio or TV.
I know what "getting a song stuck in your head is", but this is different. I can hear every single nuance of the song. I hear the harmonizing back up voices, and cymbols. I can even manipulate the song a bit if I want. I'll cut out the instruments, and add more back up vocals, or make it into a house beat! This however doesn't make it worth it. Like spinning around in a chair can be fun at first, but eventually you puke... It's like joining in to the sound of nails on a chalkboard.
I truly think it's fascinating, but I absolutely would pay someone to take it away from me. I pray every day and include this in my prayers. how do I get rid of this?
Thanx for letting me vent,
Micah
Hari
says:
November, 11 2016 at 3:48 pm
Iam also suffering with this from past 1 year. I am unable to concentrate on my studies. When I took my book the songs are repetedly playing in my head and got disturbed. Is it necessary to consult a doctor, please help me

Leave a reply